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Josh Donaldson lifts Yankees to win over rival Red Sox in season opener

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Josh Donaldson lifts Yankees to win over rival Red Sox in season opener
New York Yankees third baseman Josh Donaldson celebrates after his game-winning RBI single in the 11th inning against the Boston Red Sox on Friday at Yankee Stadium in New York City. Photo by Peter Foley/UPI | License Photo

April 8 (UPI) -- Former American League MVP Josh Donaldson capped his Yankees debut with an RBI single in the 11th inning Friday at Yankee Stadium, lifting New York to a 6-5 win over the Boston Red Sox in its 2022 season opener.

With Donaldson's run-scoring single, the Yankees earned their first walk-off win on Opening Day since Yogi Berra scored on a single by Andy Carey against the Washington Senators in 1957. It was the Yankees' sixth overall walk-off win on Opening Day.

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The Yankees trailed their longtime rival 3-0 before ace Gerrit Cole recorded a single out, though New York quickly rallied in the bottom-half of the first inning with two runs courtesy of Anthony Rizzo.

Yankees slugger Giancarlo Stanton followed up Rizzo's two-run shot with a solo home run in the fourth to tie the game at three runs apiece. Both of the long balls were off Red Sox starter Nathan Eovaldi, who beat Cole in last year's AL wild-card game.

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Alex Verdugo's go-ahead single off Clay Holmes put the Red Sox back in front 4-3 in the sixth. Yankees second baseman D.J. LeMahieu then blasted a tying homer off Red Sox reliever Garrett Whitlock in the eighth.

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Xander Bogaerts pushed the Red Sox ahead 5-4 in the 10th with an RBI single, his third hit of the game. Pinch-hitter Gleyber Torres tied it in the bottom of the inning with a sacrifice fly off Ryan Brasier.

Leading off the 11th, Donaldson -- acquired from the Minnesota Twins last month -- grounded a single up the middle to score Isiah Kiner-Falefa, who started the inning as the automatic runner at second base.

After his rough first inning, Cole settled down to retire 11 of his last 14 batters. He lasted four innings and allowed three runs on four hits, recording three strikeouts and a walk.

Eovaldi gave up three runs and five hits across five innings. He notched seven strikeouts and walked one.

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